• Hammett gets Sunwolves job

    New Zealander Mark Hammett will coach the Sunwolves, who have named a 34-man squad for next year's Vodacom Super Rugby tournament.

    Yoshitaka Tashiro, representative director of the Japan Super Rugby Association (JSRA), confirmed Hammett's appointment in Tokyo on Monday, while also announcing a 34-man squad.

    Hammett is no stranger to Super Rugby, having served as an assistant at the Crusaders (2007-10) and head coach at the Hurricanes (2011-14) before taking up the director of rugby role at the Cardiff Blues (2014-15).

    The former All Black inherits a list of 34 players that includes 15 with Test experience, and ten of the Brave Blossoms squad that took the rugby world by storm at the recent World Cup.

    Playing in a South African conference alongside the Bulls, Cheetahs and Stormers, the Sunwolves start with four home games (two in Singapore). They will play each team in their group twice, teams in the other South African conference (Jaguars, Kings, Lions, Sharks) once, in the Australian conference (Brumbies, Force, Rebels, Reds, Waratahs) once and will face the New Zealand sides in 2017.

    The team will wear a red/orange primary strip that represents the rising sun, while a grey alternate signifies the speed and fighting spirit of the wolf that is fiercely emblazoned across both jerseys.

    Sunwolves squad:

    Forwards – Ryuhei Arita, Timothy Bond, Andrew Durutalo, Ziun Gu, Shohei Hirano, Shota Horie, Yoshiya Hofsoda, Keita Inagaki, Shinnosuke Kakinaga, Takeshi Kizu, Yamamoto Koki, Faatiga Lemalu, Tomas Leonardi, Shinya Makabe, Masataka Mikami, Liaki Moli, Tsuyoshi Murata, Hitoshi Ono, Eddie Quirk.

    Backs – Derek Carpenter, Atsushi Hiwasa, Daisuke Inoue, Amanaki Lotoahea, Paea Mifi Poseti, Tusi Pisi, Yusataka Sasakura, John Stewart, Yu Tamura, Harumichi Tatekawa, Riaan Viljoen, Akihito Yamada, Ryohei Yamanaka, Hajime Yamashita, Yuki Yatomi.

    See the Sunwolves jerseys on SA Rugby magazine's Facebook page

    Photo: Ben Hoskins/Getty Images

    Post by

    Craig Lewis